Purple Heron by Melissa Shirley – Progress 2

I haven’t been working on this very often. Still trying to get a handle on it. But here it is so far:

P Heron 2

Three flowers have been completed and the background, etc. is completed halfway to the frog. Lots of border work is done, because I wanted to start playing with the bottom part of the center.

Heron Testing 2

I using as much as possible from my stash for this project. Looking at the water on the left side, I decided to try out two Bravo overdyes. I cut out the blue on the lighter overdye on the left and will use it for all the lightest areas. The darker sections will be done with the second Bravo, just as it is. I’m using two plies of the thread. The stitch is the Wave Stitch that I saw on Sheena’s Sweet Stitches blog. I started and ripped several times until I finally got the pattern set up. I think it’s going to be great!

Heron Testing 3

The right side will be done with Hungarian (I think). At the bottom, right you can see that I’ve done a small section, using the Flax ‘n Color at the top. The light gray and brown work well with the painted canvas. I’ll continue up the right side with this thread. Most of this section will continue in Hungarian using the Needle Necessities overdye. I’m thinking that I’ll stitch the green at the bottom with similar colored thread, but that may get too complicated – so we’ll see.

I said I wasn’t in a hurry to get this one done, and I only work on it 1-2 hours a week. You probably won’t see it again for a month or two.

Purple Heron by Melissa Shirley – A Start

Where in the world do you start on a huge project like this one?

Purple Heron

I’ve been staring at this on and off for several weeks. I’ve pulled lots of threads that I can use – solid colors and overdyes. I’ve been thinking about stitches. I finally decided last week that I need to pick an area and just get started on it. I didn’t want to start with the herons themselves first – too large an area. I need to ease into this. So I decided that I should figure out what to do for the green background and the gray borders first.

Testing stitches

I didn’t want to use Basketweave for all that green, so I tried out Alicia’s Lace and I think I’ll stay with that. I did the large area on the left so I could set up the pattern and then work outward from there. I’m using 4 strands of Splendor.

Next was the gray border. I’ve tried about 10 different stitches and ripped most of them out. The three showing are Rice stitch going up the left side, couching on the left, and Overlaid Cross stitch on the right. It’s hard to see in the photo, but instead of laying Splendor and then couching it down, I tried dark gray Flair and then couched it with Splendor. It’s interesting and I like it, but I don’t like the unstitched rows above and below the Flair. That left the Overlaid Cross stitch which I really like – decision made.

I’ve done a little of the Basketweave/Tent stitches for the branches and started on the first flower. I’ve never done a flower in Buttonhole stitch before so this was a first try. I didn’t like how it was working out so I pulled the bottom half out and started again.

P Heron 1

This is the second try at the flower today. I need to use more plies of Splendor so it will cover better and I still didn’t get all the white covered at the top, left. The center is pale yellow and I think it needs a darker yellow so it will show up better. The center is a French Knot in dark olive Frosty Rays (I like this part!). I’ve done quite a bit of the gray border (with a Rhodes stitch in the corner) and I’m pleased with that.

The mandala is getting a lot of attention in the mornings upstairs, but I’ll try to work on this a little each week. I’m in no hurry on this. I want to play with threads and stitches for the various areas and eventually work on it more. But it’s a start….

Batman Ornament – Progress 1

I needed something to get me started with my stitching again, so I pulled out this ornament that will be given to one of my sons for Christmas. It’s only 2.5″ wide, so it’s a quick stitch. This little design is one of the many that were designed – for comic book lovers – by Rogue Needlepoint Designs. I bought this one from Michelle at Come to the Point!

Batman orni-1

The back of the ornament is completed. I’m using only Needlepoint Inc silk. The bottom section was stitched in black and the light gray background on the top part were stitched in Nobuko and the rest was stitched in Basketweave. I’ve started the front, but I really need to stitch the black while I’m sitting outside so it’s easier to see. I’ve tried working with my Daylight lap and a white screen on my mini iPad on my lap. It helps but outside is better, so I’ll try to get that part done tomorrow afternoon.

Tomorrow I also have to pick up the train stocking and try to get some progress done there too.

Madagascar Rug – Progress 2

I only work on this one day a week, so progress is slow. But I’ve completed the first band and wanted to show it off. This band will repeat on the right side of the rug as well.

Madagascar -2

The gray stripes between the small bands were stitch with gray Splendor using two plies. The stitch is Skip Tent with the stitches slanted down on the left side and up on the right side. This now measures 6.25″ long and 1.25″ wide. Now to move on to the other overdyed thread from Colour Complements – a purple/blue thread. This will be back when the next band is done.

Stofft’s Santa on a Brown Bear finale

I ran out of thread Sunday while working on the background. But I worked on it all afternoon after getting more thread and it’s finally finished.

Santa finale

The fur trim on Santa’s suit was stitched with two plies of dark brown Wisper and one ply of floss.  Then I stitched the tree with Gloriana Florimell and I added gold beads for ornaments.

On to the rabbit – The two shades of gray are Wisper and the white is Angora. I used simple straight stitches for the white since the Angora is a very thick thread.

I love the tassels!! I had an Anchor variegated thread that exactly matched the painted tassels. I did straight stitches over the area first in case the tassels didn’t cover completely. They turned out perfectly!

Last is the background. This background is from Ann Strite-Kurz’s book Backgrounds: The Finishing Touch. I used white Petite Sparkle Rays for the vertical lines, tied down with #8 perle in DMC B5200 and then the perle again to create the diamonds between the lines. Lastly, clear beads were sewn in the center where each diamond crosses. The finishing touch was gathering white Flair with a single strand of white floss and tacking it down here and there to give the impression of snow.

It’s been a long time coming, but he’s finally finished. Can’t wait to get him framed and ready for the holiday season!

Stofft’s Santa on a Brown Bear

Things are moving along fairly well right now.

Santa’s coat was completed in Brick stitch using a ThreadworX overdye – moving around as the color changed. At the end I had to cut the thread to use just the lighter color to finish it up. The blue mittens were stitched with one strand of Watercolors and one strand of blue Wisper. Then I roughed it up just a little with tape to make it look a little more like wool. I still have the fur trim on the hat and the coat and pants.

Santa’s beard was done with light tan Impressions and Santa’s Beard threads.

Santa-4

 

The hat was stitched with white and red Splendor, Kreinik braid and then outlined with two strands of pale gray floss to even out the edges a little. The bell on the end of the hat was done in Basketweave using gold Satin Floss from DMC and copper Light Effects from DMC.

Then I decided to try an idea for the tassels. The gold reins for the bear were stitched with Tent stitches along the face of the bear and up to the mittens. From there, I wanted them to be hanging “free” with tassels on the ends. I’ve started one of them. I used the same Kreinik braid as the rest of the reins and tacked it down in a few places with gold Accentuate. I’m using Lazy Daisy stitches to create the tassel, since I can’t cut the threads and fluff them like floss. 3-4 of those stitches have gone through the large gold bead. I need to add more stitches there. When I get it just right, I’ll start on the other one. I will use floss for the two striped tassels.

I still have the little tree to do, the rabbit, and the trim on Santa’s suit. I decided how I want to do the background – White Sparkle Rays, floss and beads. And the final touch will be white Flair – you’ll have to wait for that too. I’d like to finish up by next weekend….

Stofft’s Santa on a Brown Bear – Progress 3

I put this away last February when I couldn’t get the edges of the blanket to work out the way I envisioned it. It’s on my list of WIPs that I want to finish this year, so I got it out about a week ago and started working on it again. This is where I left it last year. The bear is stitched, the blanket is done except for the edge.

Santa-2

Now I have the light purple bridle and the candy canes done. The edge of the rug was stitched sith Brick Stitch in gold and dark purple Kreinik ribbon. The beads have been added along the bottom of the blanket (sewn down so they don’t move around). The basket for the rabbit is stitched with Splendor and a touch of Kreinik gold braid. The bag for the candy canes was stitched in Basketweave with Splendor and Kreinik gold braid. That’s good progress for one week. Here is a close-up of blanket and baskets.

Santa 3 Close-up

And here is the whole piece so far.

Santa-3

I don’t want to do the rabbit yet, since he will be done with Wisper (and Santa’s fur trim too). So I’ll work on Santa and the little tree next. A little at a time, he will get done in the next month or so.